Website showing ghastly effects of smoking is launched as Stoptober enters final week
21st October 2013
stoptoberAs we enter the final seven days of the Stoptober challenge, Medical Specialists Pharmacy would like to say a huge well done to the thousands of you who have made it this far and good luck in your quest to hopefully remain smoke-free for the rest of 2013 and beyond! Stoptober is basically just October…without the cigarettes! Health experts say that if you stop smoking for 28 days you are in fact five times more likely to actually remain smoke-free for good! Almost 21,000 followers have been amassed on the Stoptober Twitter page, as fellow smokers encourage each other on through the month.  In addition to helping each other with words of encouragement, smokers can still receive their free support pack as well as regular text messages that help to keep you focused, daily emails packed full of useful tips and advice, and there is even an interactive mobile app for iPhone and Android smartphones. If you still need reasons or motivation to quit, this month has seen the interactive website ‘Tobacco Body’ launched by Finnish doctors in conjunction with the Cancer Society of Finland. Users can first select the female or male body, and then browse through different areas such as ‘acne’, ‘face’, ‘hair’, etc. to see quite disturbing effects of smoking. It is plainly obvious to see the damage when the healthier non-smoker’s portion of the body is juxtaposed against the post-smoking side. If it’s not bad enough that looks are severely impacted, smokers are at double the risk of a blood clot and usually have a worsened sex life. Male smokers have decreased blood flow to the penis, and are twice as likely as non-smokers to suffer with erectile dysfunction. Smokers’ sperm density is also negatively affected, with the toxins in cigarettes diminishing both concentration and mobility of sperm cells in semen, harming the cell’s structure, according to the website. With regards to skin, the website explains “smokers are more likely to get spots as smoking weakens the circulation which increases the risk of infection. It also make acne more difficult to deal with.” Women smokers may not be aware of this fact, but the site also describes that smoking can actually cause hair growth on the face and arms as smoking increases levels of the male hormone, testosterone. However, there is good news in that acne and excessive hair growth in women can be treated through medications such as Dianette or Yasmin. One person who is well on the way to permanently stubbing out cigarettes is Mike Wellings, finance director at Great Western Hospital in Swindon. Mike, a bit fitness fanatic, was finding his stamina being limited because of smoking, saying: “I play lots of sport but I’ve found that smoking really impacts my performance. There’s also the combination of family pressure and health reasons. And, of course, I work in a hospital and it’s important to set an example.” Like so many who wish to quit smoking, Mike decided to turn to the smoking cessation medication Champix to get him through Stoptober and beyond. He explained: He said: “I actually started the course on the Sunday before Stoptober started. I used to smoke about 20 a day and now it’s gone down to about three. Champix makes it taste disgusting. And I’ve been drinking lots of fluids to combat the cravings too. I’ve been smoking for nearly 30 years. I tried quitting before, about four years ago when I was in Doncaster, and I managed to stop for three months. Then one day work got the better of me and I had a cigarette.  Everyone has been really supportive this time. I’m taking it just one day at a time.” If you are a smoker who is aged 18 or above and wants to quit, you can quit today with the help of Medical Specialists Pharmacy. You can obtain the smoking cessation medication Champix following an online consultation with one of Medical Specialists’ GMC registered doctors. Champix works out from as little as just £75.00 per pack and mimics the effect of nicotine on the body, and as Mike Wellings discovered, decreases the enjoyment of smoking if you decide to have a cigarette whilst on the treatment.